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  1. #1
    Niqui13's Avatar
    Niqui13 is offline Newbie
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    Default Blue tongue or Uromastyx?


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    Ok, I've decide to get myself a "Pet" lizard. I've been keeping and breeding small geckos forever, but want an animal that won't run and hide or try to bite me every time I reach my hand in its enclosure.

    I've narrowed it down to either a blue tongue skink or a uromastyx. I know about the care of each, but I am still having trouble deciding as I have never kept either of these animals before. I am looking for a lizard that is hardy, fairly easy to care for, and that is easy to handle.

    Any recommendations? Has anyone personally kept one of these lizards that could give me some care tips?

    Thanks!
    -Nicole-
    N. l. pilbarensis, N. wheeleri (for sale), P. sauvagii, T. gigas, Boyfriend

  2. #2
    Elias_Bader's Avatar
    Elias_Bader is offline Newbie
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    Hi
    I would say the blue tongues are easyer to keep as they do not need temperatures as extremely as uromastyx do. Another fact is that omnivorous animals are easier to maintain than herbivorous. And about the tameness: I know lots of Tiliquas that are as tame as they come to their keeper on their own, sit on his arm and wait for food, but there are also animals that attack the keepers hand as soon as it enters the cage...

  3. #3
    heiser's Avatar
    heiser is offline Junior member
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    I have kept both for around three (blue-tongue) to seven (uros) years. Both have pros and cons but overall I give the edge to blue tongues as pets. I have kept and bred uros including niger, ocellatus (sudanese) ornatus (ornate) and mali. Almost all of the uros eventually are big tail whippers unless handled very often AND you have the right uro. In addition, uros are very tempermental when it comes to tank/location changes. My sudanese were super calm even when breeding. The female was actually a pain at times as whenever I put my hand in the tank she would climb on my arm. They were like this for three years until I moved them to a bigger tank that opened up in the room. I liked them so much I thought a bigger cage would be a reward. The new tank was at floor height and about 50% bigger than the vision 336 I kept them in. Within a few months they decided they were "wild" and ran into their caves anytime they saw me. They started tail whipping (to the point that the male drew blood on me once, lol) and even biting. They still mated and bred like clockwork. 15 eggs every year and always at least 14 hatching. But they really no longer were "pet" quality. My nigers, ornates and mali all did a little tail whipping when first picked up then relaxed a bit. They are pretty easy to care for and it may be that my "leave them alone" attitude contributed to their good health and easy breeding, but also to their more wild nature.

    Frank my Iraian jaya blue tongue is the worst of my blue tongues. He is cranky, but all that means is he slides into his cave when he sees me opening the tank. He will eat from my hand but only banana, which he can't resist. He is super easy to care for and I have had him eating bearded dragon pellets as his main food and fruit and veggies as treats. My daughter wanted to try to keep him "vegetarian"-like so no live food. We got him as a baby which we knew would eat pellets (most will and my daughter got all the BTs in the pet shop she worked at to eat them). He hisses when picked up but them he's a big baby. Never bites, gapes or fights to get away. Northerns are even nicer, less grumpy.

    My two cents, BTs are great pets, uros are better look but leave alone. I also recommend the northerns and getting a baby to start with. Mine do seem to recognize me and are calmer than adults I see at shows and shops.

    Regards,
    John

    BTW, I am a gecko person (50:1) but have/had ackies, dragons, uros, chams and a few other "larger" herps as "pets"
    Last edited by heiser; 11-27-2007 at 12:20 PM.

  4. #4
    PassPort's Avatar
    PassPort is offline Senior Member
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    I've kept pretty much everything, but I'm saying to go w/ the blue tongue.

    Uro's like LOTS of heat ( +125W bulb minimum) and that gets expensive over time. The one I kept back in high school was a CB Mali and he was straight wicked. I kept him outside (San Diego) with a supplemental basking bulb. He routinely drew blood and I had to resort to handling him with a leather gardening glove. Even then he'd bruise my knuckles through the glove! I had him from about 6" to almost full grown and he never tamed down.

    The only draw back to the Blue tongue, in my opinion, is that they stink pretty bad. That's the only reason why I've never owned one.
    geckos from around the world...

  5. #5
    Riverside Reptiles's Avatar
    Riverside Reptiles is offline Geckos Unlimited Admin
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    For a "pet" lizard, IMO it's hard to beat a tegu (argentine...NOT columbian). I know that it's not one of the two choices here. But something you may want to look into. IMO they're the smartest, most interactive herps I've come across. Feel free to PM if you want/need any particular info on them.
    Ethan
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    To ALL GU members, please take the time to look through old threads and/or use the search feature BEFORE asking questions. GU is a huge archive of information and most of the info that you're looking for is already there just waiting for you to find it.
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  6. #6
    heiser's Avatar
    heiser is offline Junior member
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    Quote Originally Posted by chevyrumble55 View Post
    The only draw back to the Blue tongue, in my opinion, is that they stink pretty bad. That's the only reason why I've never owned one.
    I find mine very low odor, but that is most likely due to me feeding them RepCal bearded dragon pellets and fresh fruit only. No bugs. Same is true for bearded dragons, the more insects they eat the worse the poop smells. Also, a lot of people feed (or used to feed) BTs cat food or dog food. Then they really smell. I keep mine on shredded cyprus (snake keeper) and spot clean every other day and change out monthly and have no odor problem.

  7. #7
    Zbiz's Avatar
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    BTS all the way. I have only kept BTS for a short time and I can tell you, you cannot find a better personality in a lizard. Get a captive born and make sure its from austrailian lines. A Northern would be best imo. Andrew Seikes, my mentor, is one of the leaders in BTS care and breeding. He has some of the best true PURE lines around. This is his web... Welcome to Sunset Skinks! Please what ever you decide don't buy a hybrid!!! Pure BTS lines are going to disappear from the US and we cant get any more from Oz because of their policies! But I'm sure being a Knobby keeper you know this lol. Good LUCK!

  8. #8
    Niqui13's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for your input!

    I decided to go with the Blue Tongue Skink, and purchased a little CB 1 month old Irian Jaya yesterday. He should be here on Friday, so I'll be sure to post some pictures once he arrives.

    Zbiz- I was looking for a Northern, but was having a hard time finding any. I had a hard time finding anything but imported Indo's, so I jumped on the chance to get a CB baby IJ. Late fall and winter are never the best time for finding reptiles.

    Anyone have any good tips on caring for Bluey's? I've read all the caresheets, but nothing beats personal experience. Also, if anyone has a Bluey, I would love to see some pictures.

    Again, thanks for all the advice guys.

    P.S. Riverside Reptiles- I agree with you about the Tegus. I've seen a few in person, and they are awesome. I would love to get one, but I don't have the room, so it was not an option at the moment. Someday, though, for sure!
    -Nicole-
    N. l. pilbarensis, N. wheeleri (for sale), P. sauvagii, T. gigas, Boyfriend

  9. #9
    heiser's Avatar
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    Good Choice!

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